The appellant ("Tay"), who was a publicaccountant, appeared before an Inquiry Committee ("IC") appointed by the respondent ("PAB"), where he faced 19 charges concerning breaches of professional and technical standards. The appellant was then suspended for 18 months on the ground of professional misconduct.
On appeal, he denied the allegation of professional misconduct and asserted that the penalty was too harsh.
Held, dismissing the appeal:
(1) The auditor's duty was to ascertain and state the true financial position of the company at the time of the audit. He was to exercise reasonable care and skill in examining the company's books, not merely to ascertain what they showed, but also to satisfy himself that they showed the company's true financial position: at .
(2) There was no reason to dispute the IC's findings on the charges against the appellant as he himself admitted to failing to observe the various professional guidelines relating to the charges: at .
(3) The Statement of Auditing Guidelines were statements of minimum standards to be adhered to by practising accountants. The appellant had not justified his departure from the guidelines, and had also failed to show that the alternative procedures he adopted were acceptable: at .
(4) The appellant's suspension of 18 months was left undisturbed. First, the IC considered the appellant's breaches as grave and serious in nature. Second, four of its five members recommended suspension for the maximum of two years, while the fifth member thought that his registration as a publicaccountant ought to be cancelled: at .
[Observation: Professional misconduct of a person included any conduct that would be reasonably regarded by other persons in the same profession as calculated to destroy or lower public confidence in that person, or as injuring the credit or standing of that person in his professional capacity. His conduct need not be... [continues]
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